Rom 9:8 8 That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed. What does this phrase mean : They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: First we must understand the immediate context, Rom 9:6-8 and the children of the flesh would be ethnic israel of Vs 6, one of the Israel's mentioned there ! Rom 9:6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: One of these Israels is the ethnic nation of israel in general, the other is an elect Nation Israel in Particular, and One is according to Abraham's Physical abilty, according to the flesh, and one is according to no ability of Abraham at all, but God's Word of Promise and Power ! Thats why they are Called the Children of God. Now Rom 9:8 means that those jews, the mere physical biological children of Abraham, as pointed out in Vs 7 7 Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called. Remember when Jesus told some ethnic jews this : Jn 8:37 I know that ye are Abraham's seed; but ye seek to kill me, because my word hath no place in you. But He comes right back and indicates that they are not Children of God, and dont have God as their Father Jn 8:42 42 Jesus said unto them[those ethnic jews of the physical seed of Abraham], If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. So Jesus flat out repudiates any false notion that just because you are a jew of Abrahamic blood descent, that you belong to God , are one of His Children ! Being not the Children of God, Not the Children of the Promise, not the Children of the Covenant like those ethnic jews Peter addresses here in Acts 3:25 25 Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed. Now this is not to say that not any ethnic jews are the Children of God and Promise, but that they are not more so than any other Ethnicity ! Ethnic jews are no more naturally the Children of God and Promise than Ethnic Blacks, Whites, or Hispanics, or Orientals, because the Children of God/Promise are found within all Nations of People according to God's Election of Grace, but none are Children of God/ Promise by nationality or bloodline as many ethnic jews boast, and even others do as well !